VATICAN – Even in societies increasingly marked by divisions and prejudice, Catholics gather every Sunday "in the Lord's name and acknowledge that they are brothers and sisters," Pope Francis said.
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VATICAN – The sacraments are gifts from God that are given freely and are not a way for the church to fill up its coffers to cover expenses, Pope Francis said.
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VATICAN – Every heart longs for unconditional love and fidelity, Pope Francis said.
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SYDNEY, Australia – Australia's Catholic bishops and religious orders, responding to recommendations from the Royal Commission Into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, accepted 98 percent of its suggestions, but said they could not accept recommendations that would violate the seal of confession.
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NEW DELHI – India's Catholic Church has led a chorus of protest over a demand to ban the sacrament of reconciliation from the chairwoman of the National Commission for Women.
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PADERBORN, Germany – According to a regional newspaper report, Archbishop Hans-Josef Becker of Paderborn has decided to allow Protestant spouses of Catholics living in his diocese to receive holy Communion "in individual cases."
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DUBLIN, Ireland – Former Irish President Mary McAleese has said that the baptism of infants is a form of coercion, calling on the Catholic Church to change its practice.
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BALTIMORE, Md. – The Archdiocese of Baltimore has announced a policy to allow weddings to be held outside of parish churches, including at outdoor venues.
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OXFORD, England – The Catholic Church in Congo said emergency measures will remain indefinitely in place in parishes at risk of Ebola, and urged effective action against the disease by the government of President Joseph Kabila.
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VATICAN – Everyone who has received the sacrament of confirmation has received the gift of the Holy Spirit, who guides them and gives them the strength to follow God's will, Pope Francis said.
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VATICAN – The baptismal font is a tomb in which a person dies to sin, and it is a womb through which a person is born to new life in Christ, Pope Francis said.
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VATICAN – Naming a child is an important task for parents, because it gives children a sense of identity and belonging to their family and to God, Pope Francis said.
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EDMONTON – Levi Breederland and his wife Kaitlyn feel a strong sense of relief as they approach Easter — after months of preparation they will finally be received into the Catholic Church.
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VATICAN – God always loves and always remains faithful to his children, despite their sin and idolatry, Francis said.
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COLOGNE, Germany – The German bishops have published their own guidelines on Amoris laetitia allowing, in certain cases, for divorced-and-remarried Catholics to receive Communion.

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